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Biden Extends Lifeline for Struggling Homeowners

February 16, 2021

Home foreclosures for federally backed mortgages will once again receive another three-month extension, moved back to June 30. The foreclosure moratorium originally was set to expire March 31.

The moratorium is part of aid to help homeowners financially during the COVID-19 pandemic. This marks the second time that President Joe Biden’s administration has extended the moratorium since he took office on Jan. 21.

The administration also announced it will provide struggling homeowners a longer time to request a mortgage payment forbearance, which would allow them to pause or reduce mortgage payments. Homeowners now have until June 30 to request forbearance from their lender.

The government also is allowing borrowers to defer mortgage payments for an additional six months.

In a statement, Biden called the extensions “an important step towards building stronger and more equitable communities.” The extended protections are partially aimed at helping communities of color that have been hardest hit in the pandemic and have had a disproportionate share of homeowners with delinquent loans or forbearance plans, White House officials said.

Last week, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, which oversees Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, had issued a three-month forbearance extension. That FHFA extension, along with this current one, will cover 70% of existing single-family home mortgages, White House officials announced. These actions do not apply to the 30% of mortgages that are privately owned.

About 2.7 million homeowners are currently enrolled in COVID-19 forbearance plans, USA Today reports.

Tuesday’s announcement does not apply to a federal moratorium on evictions for renters. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s federal moratorium on evictions is currently set to expire on March 31.

For more information on relief options, visit consumerfinance.gov/housing.